KEUKENHOF – UTRECHT – ACHTERVELD – NIJMEGEN – ARNHEM GROESBEEK – FLORENCE – CHIANTI – ASSISI – ORTONA – CASSINO ANZIO – TIVOLI – FRASCATI – CASTEL GANDOLFO – ROME
May 2 – 16, 2020 (15 days)
Golf & the history of the Liberation of Holland & the Italian Campaign
We depart Canada for Amsterdam.
After arrival, we visit Keukenhof Gardens. Marvel at the splendour of the Spring blossom and stretch your legs after the flight. This afternoon we proceed to our hotel in Central Holland, around Utrecht and enjoy dinner. (D)
We have our first golf game and in the afternoon visit Achterveld to join the locals in their commemoration festivities. (B,D)
Today being Liberation Day, we will participate in the commemorative celebrations. The Dutch come out in force to pay tribute to returning veterans, reconfirming the specialties that connect Holland and Canada. (B, D)
We begin the day with our second game and then continue on with visits to more of the significant sites in this region. (B,D)
We start the day in the best way possible, with golf at a beautiful course in historic grounds.
Then we will visit Florence, exploring the historic centre around the Duomo, Baptistry, Palazzo Signoria, and the boutiques along the iconic Ponte Vecchio. (B, D)
Poggio del Medici Golf Course
After our game today we will visit Tuscany’s famous Chianti region to enjoy some wine tasting and dinner. (B, D)
Chianti region - Getty Images
We depart for Ortona today, stopping en route in the hilltop village of Assisi, home of several saints and monastic orders, first amongst them the Franciscan. We’ll visit the Basilica, which is endowed with art by some of the greatest medieval artists. Then we’ll take some time for lunch before proceeding to the Adriatic Coast, where we can visit some of the sites around Ortona. (B, D)
Assisi from nvalley-Magalex
This morning we’ll visit more of the sites in and around Ortona, then in the afternoon, we’ll drive to Cassino. Ortona houses a Peace Museum, the Church of San Tomaso, which houses the bones of St. Thomas the Apostle, and the Church of Santa Maria di Constantinopoli where the Seaforths famously contrived to hold Christmas dinner in 1943. There are a number of significant war cemeteries in the region, including Moro River, Ancona and Gradara. (B, D)
The historic abbey of Monte Cassino overlooking the Liri Valley was captured by Allies in a Polish-led initiative May 17-18, 1944. Cassino Commonwealth War Cemetery is the largest Commonwealth cemetery in Italy. We’ll spend the day visiting sites and memorials in the area of the Hitler and Gustav Lines, Melfa River where Major Jack Mahony of the Westminster Regiment was awarded the Victoria Cross, the Gari and Liri Valleys, the Canadian memorial in Pontecorvo or the Kingsmill monument which commemorates the Breaking of the Gustav Line by Canadian tanks in May 1944.(B, D)
Commonwealth Cemetery Cassino-Kay de Lautour
We depart Cassino, following the Allied advance toward Rome and stop in Anzio, landing area for the mainland Italy invasion. We end our day in the Alban hills south of Rome in Frascati, known for its white wine and noble villas. (B, D)
After our golf game today we drive to Tivoli and visit the Villa d’Este with its fabled water gardens.
We’ll stay to enjoy dinner in the area before returning to Frascati for the night. (B, D)
Villa d'Este in Tivoli - Getty Images
We play the final game of our tour this morning.
This afternoon we’ll visit Castelgandolfo, the scenic hill town overlooking Lake Albano which is home to the papal summer residence. The famous gardens in which the palaces sit were once the site of Emperor Domitian’s villa. (B, D)
Castelgandolfo Golf Course
Transfer to the airport for the trip home or extend your stay in Rome. (B)